The older brother had love/hate issues from shortly after Doodle's birth in James Hurst's short story, "The Scarlet Ibis." Brother hates his little brother at different times because he is so different from his other friends. Brother wants a younger sibling to do things with--to run, to box and to sit in a tree, among them. But Doodle's physical limitations guarantee that he will never reach the older brother's expectations. Despite Doodle's big heart and the accomplishments that he reaches, Brother realizes that his own ultimate goals for Doodle can not be attained. On Doodle's final day, Brother's hateful streak returns, and he leaves him behind to die alone in the rain.
- "He was born when I was six, and was, from the outset, a disappointment."
- "It was bad enough having an invalid brother, but having one who possibly was not all there was unbearable, so I began to make plans to kill him by smothering him with a pillow."
- "Sometimes I accidentally turned him over, but he never told Mama."
- "... that streak of cruelty within me awakened. I ran as fast as I could, leaving him far behind me with a wall of rain dividing us."
- "He had failed and we both knew it... The faster I walked, he walked, so I began to run."